In recent years, with the help of virtual and augmented reality, experiential marketing has become one of the top ways to market a brand across industries. But because the nature of experiential marketing is rooted in onsite, hands-on event experiences, companies and marketing agencies have struggled to properly track and measure metrics for these events.
But with innovative technology, the struggle to track key experiential marketing event metrics is over. We’ve curated a list of the top 7 technologies marketing agencies can use to help their client’s track and provide key metrics to their clients.
7 Essential Ways to Track Experiential Marketing Events
Passive wearables, like tags, branded wristbands, and even watches that attendees already have like Apple watches and Fitbits, can be used to track experiential marketing events. For instance, wearables can be used to collect data, like how many visitors your event drew, what aspect of the experience did the visitors spend the most time at, visitor traffic patterns, and much more. Another bonus of wearables is that they will cut down your check-in wait time and ensure every lead is captured. No matter what type of technology you choose to embed in your wearable, NFC, RFID, etc., wearables are a must-have technology to track KPIs and ROI at experiential marketing events.
2. NFC Technology
NFC, or near field communication (which is most commonly embedded into wearables) is a technology used to communicate information from one device to another in short range. Usually, NFC devices are enabled by a tapping motion (e.g. tapping your Apple watch at your local food store or Starbucks to pay). Although most commonly used for mobile payments, NFC technology has been added into event badges and other wearables as a popular, secure way to collect information. Instead of having paper collateral at your experiential marketing events, you can give your visitors NFC technology, during the event. Attendees can then simply tap on NFC devices that are spread out throughout your event. These devices are linked to digital displays of your clients’ company’s content that attendees can access whenever they want. If that wasn’t enough, this same tap also gives the company attendees information, so they can reach out to them after the experiential marketing event is over.
3. RFID Technology
Another popular technology being used to track experiential marketing events is RFID, or radio-frequency identification technology. RFID technology is commonly embedded in wearables, like tags, and automatically checks attendees in and out of events, eliminating check-in lines and barcode scanning completely. In addition, some RFID tags even capture attendee information, like contact information, the sessions or booths attendees visited, the length of time they stayed, and, perhaps most importantly, the engagement level. Knowing the engagement metrics around your event will allow you to understand your audience, specifically what your attendees were searching for at your event. RFID technology provides invaluable information that is needed to build a strong marketing campaign.
4. QR Codes
Although QR codes have been around longer than some of the other technology on this list, they are still a useful tool for events, particularly experiential marketing events. That’s because QR codes can be used to create gamification, while still tracking attendees and collecting valuable data. For instance, you can hide QR codes all over your event and send attendees on a scavenger hunt or create a point game (e.g. engaging with your product and scanning a QR code to get points to redeem for a prize). QR codes can also be used to link to online collateral like videos, demos, eBooks, and more. QR codes are a useful way to engage visitors during your event and send them to targeted, optimized webpages that feature valuable company content for them to download. You’ll not only be able to track how many scans your QR gets during your event, but will also collect attendee’s information, like name and email address, from your content downloads that can be later used for marketing purposes.
5. Mobile Event Apps
Mobile event apps are really a must-have for any experiential marketing event. Not only can mobile event apps integrate with other event planning technology, like wearables, NFC and, RFID technology so you can track attendees movements and connections, event apps also allow you to collect attendee feedback. Through polling technology, you can survey attendees in real-time during any part of your event. Some mobile event apps, also allow you to change and add to survey questions during your event, allowing you to adapt to any situation while engaging your audience. Surveying your attendees live during your experiential marketing event will allow you to better gauge how engaging your attendees are finding your event and allow you to make changes in real-time. To further help connect with your attendees and make them feel like they are an active part of your event,you can share your real-time results on the big screen and discuss the changes you’re going to make to your event in real-time. This is just one of the many ways mobile event app features can be used in experiential marketing events.
6. Facial Recognition
If you’re looking to add a wow-factor to your experiential marketing check-in process, then facial recognition technology is for you! Facial recognition technology can be used at registration to make the check-in process five times faster. With facial recognition check-in technologies, attendees no longer have to waste their time on manual processes, instead, in nine seconds they can be checked-in, and on their way into your experiential event. The benefits of using facial recognition technology at your experiential marketing event go beyond check-in though. Instead of waiting until the end of your event or live polling attendees, you can use facial recognition technology to measure an attendee’s micro-expressions, determine if they are enjoying your event, and make overall real-time changes to your event or send targeted suggestions to people who aren’t enjoying a particular session. This data has so many potential applications for experiential event marketers.
7. Handheld Scanner
Although facial recognition and other new check-in technologies are on the rise for experiential marketing events, handheld scanners are still needed since they capture certain insights that simply cannot be gathered without it. Specifically, handheld scanners gather more in-depth information for lead retrieval purposes, like why the visitor was there, what they were looking for at your event, etc. In addition, handheld scanners are also useful in monitoring who is entering and leaving parts of an event; whereas, the data from passive technologies does not differentiate between attendees, staff, speakers, etc., so your numbers can become skewed.
Ultimately, a combination of the technologies from the list above, both passive and active, will help you track your experiential marketing events in the most accurate way possible.
Do you use any of these 7 technologies for your experiential marketing events? What’s your favorite? Let us know by commenting below!